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MEasurement of Lichen and Seed Survival through non-invasive Assessment of metabolic activity (MELISSA)
Date du début: 19 mars 2014, Date de fin: 18 mars 2016 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

"Desiccation tolerance is an intriguing phenomenon that allows certain organisms, including lichens and most plant seeds, to survive long periods of time in the absence of water. As yet, the molecular mechanisms that underpin the ""desiccome"" are not fully understood. Tools that can diagnose how long desiccation tolerant organisms can remain in the dry state would be extremely valuable, especially for the seed industry, and for conservation projects.MELISSA will use a unique combination of the most modern non-invasive techniques to diagnose cell viability (infrared thermography, PAM microscopy imaging, hyperspectral imaging, headspace GC-MS) in conjunction with state-of-the-art metabolomics techniques (UPLC-MS, GC-MS). At the forefront of knowledge, the primary scientific aims of MELISSA are to(1) characterise the early stages of rehydration of seeds and lichens (i.e. to diagnose whether or not an organism can ""spring back to life"" after periods of desiccation);(2) develop novel tools for the non-invasive diagnosis of viability; and(3) transfer the knowledge gained to the industry sector.The ""scientist in charge"" at the University of Innsbruck (UIBK) has an unparalleled expertise in both seed and lichen biology, and staff have widely-acknowledged expertise in plant stress physiology generally. This, the unique facilities available, and the location within the European Alps, where lichens required for the project are abundant, makes the UIBK the most suitable place in the world to develop the proposed research program.This Marie Curie Fellowship will strongly enhance the applicant’s scientific credentials. She will receive extensive training in the most modern analytical techniques used in the biomedical sciences, including metabolomics, in non-invasive methods beyond the ""omics"" techniques, will establish first contact with industry sector, and overall, will develop into a mature scientist."